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Formnext Connect 2020: the global AM community meets virtually

The largest online AM conference is getting ready to start

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On 10 – 12 November 2020, Formnext Connect – the virtual edition of the world’s leading AM exhibition – will once again set the tone for the industry with an outstanding lineup of content. It will also offer all its participants a great deal of value in the form of intelligent matchmaking and exhibitors’ presentations of their latest innovations. Due to the year’s extraordinary circumstances, registration is free and includes access to the TCT Conference @ Formnext Connect.

Like the exhibitions of years past, Formnext Connect will be largely driven by the content on offer. “We’ve had a great deal of success with our concept of showcasing real industrial applications all along the process chain,” says Sascha F. Wenzler, Vice President for Formnext at Mesago Messe Frankfurt GmbH. “We’re now going to take Formnext into the virtual realm with an extensive main stage program and a variety of individual sessions.”

To that end, Formnext has built a new studio in Frankfurt, which has earned a reputation as one of the capital cities of additive manufacturing. There, it will be broadcasting an exclusive program that will take a closer look at the current and future challenges in industrial 3D printing during practically all hours of the three-day event. On the main stage, for example, some of the biggest names in AM will come together for panel discussions on its potential uses in key sectors such as mechanical engineering, aerospace, medical technology, and the automobile industry. The participants will include high-ranking representatives from Airbus, AMT, Audi, Continental, KSB, MAG Medical, Ottobock, Schaeffler, Siemens, and VW.

At the same time, Formnext Connect’s wide-ranging lineup of supporting content will feature topic-specific sessions, expert talks, roundtable events, and much more. A variety of international subsidiaries and brand events of Formnext will present their portfolio, and partner organizations like ACAM, BE-AM, VDMA Working Group Additive Manufacturing, and the VDWF will be on hand to share their in-depth knowledge. On 10 November 2020, participants can also experience the innovative business ideas submitted to the Formnext Start-up Challenge. In a virtual showcase, the purmundus challenge will present all of the year’s finalists before announcing the winners on Wednesday, 11 November.

This year’s TCT Conference @ Formnext Connect will be accessible without an additional ticket as part of the exhibition’s supporting program. In addition, the session on 11 November has been scheduled to reflect the time zones across the American continent, and the 12 November session will start early enough to accommodate participants from the Asia-Pacific region.

Executive sustainability

On Tuesday, 10 November, Formnext Connect will kick off with the main stage program featuring an array of highlights. Things will get underway with a panel of executives from EOS, ACAM, Siemens, VW, and AM Ventures, who will be discussing various aspects of additive manufacturing. Other conversations on sustainability (with Fraunhofer IPT, Dyemansion, and the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland) and mechanical engineering (Met-L-Flo, VDMA, BASF, KSB, and the Association for Manufacturing Technology) will then follow throughout the day. In the late afternoon (CET), representatives from Relativity Space, the Airbus group, and the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences will delve into the topic of 3D printing in the aerospace industry. In between these sessions, Formnext Connect participants can obtain plenty of valuable information on key markets like China, Japan, Russia, and the United States, or get to know more about the winners of the 2020 Start-up Challenge at the Pitchnext event.

New standards

Wednesday’s proceedings will include a discussion of how 3D printing can be used in the automotive industry with representatives from Continental Engineering Service and Audi. Meanwhile, the User Case Area will highlight specific applications from the field of mechanical engineering, and experts from Ottobock and the MGA Medical network will explore the opportunities AM presents in medical technology. Participants can also look forward to insights into another very exciting AM market: Israel.

That same day, Formnext Connect will offer select knowledge in specific areas at the BE-AM Symposium (construction and architecture) and the AM Standards Forum (norms and standards). The AM Standards Forum is organized in cooperation with the US Commercial Service. The awards ceremony of the purmundus challenge – the international design competition featured at Formnext – will provide a glimpse of the future of 3D and 4D printing, as well.

Formnext Connect 2020 virtual

China, Formnext’s partner country in 2020

Thursday, 12 November, will then center on China and the broader AM market in the Asia-Pacific region. Industry experts from all across the world will discuss current developments and opportunities while sharing valuable information. Further content on additive manufacturing as it pertains to tool and mold making will round out the day’s program, with VDWF in particular, presenting on specific solutions and important trends.

On all three days of Formnext Connect, Discover3Dprinting seminars will welcome participants who are just getting started in industrial 3D printing. The Additive Manufacturing Working Group (VDMA) will also be demonstrating real applications and corresponding expertise on the topic “AM for Industry – From Manual Work to Industrial Production” from Tuesday to Thursday.

The entire schedule can be viewed via the event calendar, which also makes it possible to access the individual sessions directly. Please note that the program is subject to change. The live program of Formnext Connect 2020 will end at 2:00 pm on Thursday, 12 November. The platform will, however, continue to offer its matchmaking and text-based chat functions along with plenty of on-demand content until 31 December.

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Victor Anusci

Victor does not really exist. He is a pseudonym for several writers in the 3D Printing Media Network team. As a pseudonym, Victor has also had a fascinating made-up life story, living as a digital (and virtual) nomad to cover the global AM industry. He has always worked extra-hard whenever he was needed to create unique content. However, lately, as our editorial team has grown, he is mostly taking care of publishing press releases.

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